The motto of Saint Martin de Porres School is Experience the Excellence, and our strength is found in our faith. Since the first vision for our school took place, the culture and drive toward excellence has been, indeed, a palpable experience.
In 1963, Monsignor Pius F. Sommer, pastor of Saint Martin de Porres Church, visited with Reverend Mother Lawrence Marie, Mother General of the Dominican Sisters at Blauvelt, New York, and asked for her order of sisters to staff Saint Martin de Porres School, which was projected to open the following September.
On September 4, 1964, Saint Martin de Porres School opened its doors to welcome students in grades 1-3, and added a grade every year until it became a kindergarten through grade 8 Catholic elementary school. Sister Joanna was the first principal of our school, and the Dominican Sisters of Blauvelt staffed our school for many years until 1991. In 1988, while the sisters still remained as teachers within our school, Mrs. Donna Carolan became the first lay principal, followed by Mrs. Mary Jane Daley in 1994. Our current principal, Mrs. Kathleen Leahy, arrived in 2008. Since then, our school enrollment has grown from approximately 260 students to our current enrollment of over 450 students.
The original building, built in 1963, has also changed with time. In 2003, a new wing was added to the existing building to include a science lab, computer lab, digital library, lounge and two additional classrooms. In 2009, our Pre-Kindergarten programs were added, and, in 2011, to accommodate the continuing increase in enrollment, a new cafeteria was built. The following year, technology was advanced by adding smart boards into all classrooms.
In November of 2012, Saint Martin de Porres School was recognized on a national level and awarded the National Blue Ribbon for excellence in education. The following year, in order to continue moving forward in education, the multi-media center was upgraded, and iPads and tablets were integrated into the curriculum.
To this day, Saint Martin de Porres School remains the only parish-based elementary school in Dutchess County. With the support of its dedicated parish, our school continues to thrive and remain one of the premier schools in the Hudson Valley. While it is often said that history is merely a prologue, Saint Martin de Porres School’s motto, Experience the Excellence, is put into action every day. We will always commit ourselves to embrace the past, to respond to the present needs and trends, and to continue best teaching practices to form the leaders of tomorrow.